Rec-in’ to stay in shape

Every January, students and faculty swarm Youngstown State University’s Andrews Student Recreation and Wellness Center, hoping to start the new year with a fitness resolution. Brandy Schumaker, assistant director for fitness and facility operations, said the numbers fall by the end of the semester.

Scott Leonard, an English professor, said he has been frequenting the Rec Center for about two years.

“My ‘getting religion’ about exercise and diet usually starts with a New Year’s resolution,” he said. “I’ve been losing and gaining the same 30 pounds for the past 30 years.”Schumaker said the numbers tell much the same story.

Around this time last year, the gym saw an influx in attendance, with roughly 7,000 total visits. But after that high, fewer people started going as the semester led on.

“Numbers did decline by about 200 visits, and the weeks began to average out with a total of approximately 5,000 visits per week,” Schumaker said.

The first day of this spring semester, however, has topped last year’s in having 1,241 visits just within the first day.

“The trend seems to be Mondays are the highest in volume, and as the week progresses, the numbers decrease,” Schumaker said.

Marissa Dell’Arco, a second-year student, said she just started using the Rec this year, but added that she’s visiting it twice a week as opposed to not at all last year around this time.

Dell’Arco said she had come on occasion during the fall, but simply got too lazy for it. “I just want to look and feel good for spring break. Will I go anywhere? Who knows, but it doesn’t hurt to be prepared,” she said.

The university faculty is flooding in the doors as well. Unlike students, YSU faculty have to purchase a membership to use the Rec. The Rec offers a Living Well Incentive that has a reimbursement built into the program, giving employees $50 to $100 back after they have logged 90 visits.

Leonard received this reimbursement before, but said he doubts that he will be able to achieve the “magic” 90 visits this academic year.

He said he usually keeps a routine going until summer, when he doesn’t normally travel to campus just for the Rec. Leonard said he tries to remain active by walking, gardening or golfing, but he said hasn’t been able to continue year-round.

“The business — and chilliness — usually puts an end to the outdoor activities, and by then, I’m out of the habit of going to the gym,” Leonard said.